Himachal to attract tourists to unexplored areas

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Shimla, Sep 30 (IANS) The Himachal Pradesh government has launched a ‘Nai Raahein Nai Manzilein’ initiative in a bid to promote tourism in unexplored areas in the hill state by developing infrastructure there, an official said on Sunday.

Bir-Billing in Kangra district, Janjehli in Mandi and Chanshal in Shimla would be developed and promoted under this endeavour.

A budgetary allocation of Rs 50 crore has been made in this fiscal for the purpose, a government spokesperson said.

Parks, walking trails, trekkers’ hostels, toilets, wide roads, landscaping, improved solid waste management and lighting would be developed at such tourism circuits.

Besides, emphasis would be laid on the promotion of local cuisines, folk artistes, local artisans, culture, tour and eco guides.

A hub for paragliding, Bir-Billing would be developed at a cost of Rs 14.62 crore, said the spokesperson.

Under the Swadesh Darshan scheme of the Union government, a paragliding institute will be set up at Bir-Billing, costing Rs 8.07 crore.

Chanshal area will be developed for adventure sports, skiing and camping at a cost of Rs 15.12 crore.

To support the state’s thrust on tourism, the Centre has sanctioned a project costing Rs 1,892 crore to strengthen basic infrastructure in Himachal.

The state economy is highly dependent on tourism, besides hydroelectricity and horticulture.

Himachal Pradesh, known for apples and picture-perfect tourist spots, attracted 19.6 million tourists last year, 2.9 times its population, as per the state Economic Survey 2017-18.

Kullu and Manali are tourist hotspots, followed by Shimla and Dharamsala.

–IANS

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